German government should not raise any objections to BlackBerry’s acquisition of Secusmart says Secusmart Boss

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The managing director of Secusmart has said that the German government will not raise any objections to BlackBerry’s planned acquisition of Secusmart, whose encryption technology protects the devices of government officials including Angela Merkel, the head of the company said.

“I am sure that there will be a positive decision after it has been looked at,” Hans-Christoph Quelle told Reuters in a telephone interview.

The German government will be looking very carefully at the purchase to assure the security merits of the new owner meet the standards expected by the German government.

In a statement Wednesday by Germany’s Interior Ministry spokesman Johannes Dimroth he states the German Government were ‘unaware’ of the details of the announcement made on Tuesday at BlackBerry’s Security Summit in New York.

Mr. Dimroth said at a regular government press conference in Berlin.

“We will consider very, very carefully and with great seriousness if there are any long-term effects of this sale, in particular regarding the security properties of the affected products, and this also includes a review of possible legal action,”

BlackBerry replied quickly with their own statement.

“We have a long-standing and trusted relationship with the German government, and Secusmart has also been a long-time partner of ours,” a BlackBerry spokeswoman said in an e-mail. “However, the transaction is subject to regulatory approvals, and until then we cannot provide comment.”

Chancellor Merkel, whose mobile phone was reported to have been tapped by U.S. intelligence agents, has a BlackBerry mobile device with Secusmart encryption, as do many other members of the German government.

Quelle said he was aware that the ministry would look at the sale according to the laws which regulate foreign deals.

But he said a sale of Secusmart would not compromise German security interests.

“Nothing changes the security of the ‘Merkel phone’ and the telephones supplied to the government,” added Quelle.

“All the secrets are only in the micro-SD (card).. which the BSI Federal Office for Information Security has developed and supplied to us,” he said. “Neither Secusmart nor BlackBerry has access to that.”

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